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Kialoa Tiare Fiberglass Adjustable Review

This top-tier SUP paddle is designed with female paddlers in mind, offering easy adjustability and excellent paddling performance
kialoa tiare fiberglass adjustable sup paddle review
Credit: Kialoa
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Price:  $199 List | Check Price at REI
Pros:  Easy to adjust, sleek, great paddle performance
Cons:  Handle more prone to hotspots
Manufacturer:   Kialoa
By Marissa Fox ⋅ Review Editor  ⋅  Jul 29, 2021
Our Editors independently research, test, and rate the best products. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Learn more
86
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#4 of 14
  • Performance - 30% 8.0
  • Weight - 20% 7.0
  • Ease of Adjustment - 20% 10.0
  • Locking Mechanism - 20% 10.0
  • Aesthetics - 10% 8.0

Our Verdict

The Kialoa Tiare is a premium paddle with a women’s-specific design. It offers a smaller grip and a thinner shaft that is more ergonomic for smaller hands. It’s easy to adjust with the built-in LeverLock in the handle and offers enough travel for a wide range of heights. The Tiare has great paddling performance, with a smaller blade area. All in all, this paddle is one of our favorites.

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Price $199 List
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Overall Score Sort Icon
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Pros Easy to adjust, sleek, great paddle performanceEasy and sturdy adjustment, lightweight, high performanceCuts cleanly through water, durable bladeInexpensive, large adjustment range, durable nylon bladeInexpensive, easy to transport
Cons Handle more prone to hotspotsSmaller adjustment rangeHeavy, looks like a toy, flutters under waterHeavy, top grip feels cheap, shaft bends during power strokeSo-so performance, looks cheap
Bottom Line This top-tier SUP paddle is designed with female paddlers in mind, offering easy adjustability and excellent paddling performanceThe Aqua-Bound Challenge has a a high-performance paddle for serious paddlersThe Vibe has a unique shape that functions as a solid all-around paddle that moves water wellAn affordable and highly adjustable paddle that will stand up to multiple users and rough usageThis paddle is one of the least expensive options but performed commensurate to its price tag
Rating Categories Kialoa Tiare Fiberg... Aqua-Bound Challeng... Werner Vibe Barrel Point Surf A... SUPply Co 3-Piece P...
Performance (30%)
8.0
9.0
8.0
6.0
5.0
Weight (20%)
7.0
9.0
5.0
4.0
3.0
Ease of Adjustment (20%)
10.0
8.0
8.0
5.0
5.0
Locking Mechanism (20%)
10.0
8.0
10.0
6.0
7.0
Aesthetics (10%)
8.0
7.0
4.0
7.0
5.0
Specs Kialoa Tiare Fiberg... Aqua-Bound Challeng... Werner Vibe Barrel Point Surf A... SUPply Co 3-Piece P...
Paddle Weight 1.5 lbs 1.3 lbs 1.9 lbs 2.2 lbs 2.1 lbs
Number of Pieces 2-piece 2-piece 2-Piece 2-piece 3-piece
Shaft Material Fiberglass Carbon Fiberglass Aluminum Aluminum
Length Range 66 in - 82 in 70 in - 80 in 68 in - 84 in 65 in - 83 in 67 - 85 in
Shaft Adjustablility 16 in 10.5 in 16 in 18 in 18 in
Blade Material Fiberglass Fibrlite epX engineered polymer reinforced with carbon Fiberglass reinforced injected molded nylon Nylon composite Nylon
Blade Dimensions 80 sq in 85 sq in 100 sq in 95 sq in Not listed
Blade Shape Teardrop Rectangular Teardrop Teardrop Teardrop
Blade Design Dihedral Dihedral Dihedral Dihedral Concave/Flat
Offset 10 degrees 10 degrees 10 degrees 10.5 degrees Not listed
Compact Size 66 in 66 in 34.5 in 65 in N/A
Includes Cover No No No Yes No
Locking Mechanism Handle LeverLock "Performance" Snap Button Handle LeverLock "TwinPin" Collar Clamp Dual-Pin Collar Clamp

Our Analysis and Test Results

This paddle was designed in consultation with an expert female paddler, particularly for female paddlers. Our testers loved it — and we highly recommend it to any ladies looking to take their paddling to the next level.

Performance Comparison


kialoa tiare fiberglass adjustable sup paddle review - the smaller teardrop blade on this paddle makes it easier for a...
The smaller teardrop blade on this paddle makes it easier for a faster cadence.
Credit: David Wise

Performance


Our first set of tests and evaluations looked at how the Tiare feels on the water. This paddle did exceptionally well, meriting one of the better scores of the entire pack of paddles. We based this on how much power we felt we were getting out of each product, how it felt to hold and paddle, and how cleanly it entered and exited the water.

The fiberglass shaft on the Tiare is very rigid and does a great job of effectively and efficiently transferring your power into pushing the board forward. It’s very rigid, so you aren’t wasting a bunch of energy by bending the paddle. The 10-degree offset gives you an increased effective paddling length per stroke, and the teardrop shape enters the water cleanly and easily.

kialoa tiare fiberglass adjustable sup paddle review - this paddle has a 10-degree offset and a teardrop blade.
This paddle has a 10-degree offset and a teardrop blade.
Credit: David Wise

However, this paddle does have a smaller overall surface area than many of the other top-tier products, so you are limited at the amount of power that you can get per paddle stroke, though it will be much less fatiguing to paddle if you don’t have a ton of upper body strength.

We also noticed that the ridges on the handle can cause hot spots or a bit more irritation than some of the smoother options.

Weight


We moved on to comparing and evaluating the heft of each paddle. Heavier paddles make longer trips much more fatiguing — even if they only tip the scales a tiny bit more than the lighter ones. The Tiare did decently well, earning a score in the middle of the group.


This paddle weighs in at 1.5 pounds or 24 ounces. The lightest carbon paddles are a little closer to 1.2 to 1.3 pounds, while the cheaper aluminum options can be as heavy as 2.2 pounds.

Ease of Adjustment


Next, we moved on to comparing and scoring how user-friendly and easy to adjust the length of each paddle is. The Kialoa Tiare did very well, earning one of the best scores out of all the paddles that we have tested.

kialoa tiare fiberglass adjustable sup paddle review - it's easy to adjust the length of this paddle to get the perfect...
It's easy to adjust the length of this paddle to get the perfect paddle stroke.
Credit: David Wise

This paddle offers up to 16 inches of adjustment, ranging from 66 inches to 82 inches. The telescoping fiberglass shafts move freely, and it’s easy to adjust the length, even on the water. We also like that this paddle offers continuous adjustment in that range, instead of discrete settings.

kialoa tiare fiberglass adjustable sup paddle review - the locking mechanism integrated into the handle is one of our...
The locking mechanism integrated into the handle is one of our all-time favorites.
Credit: David Wise

Locking Mechanism


Moving on from the ease of adjustment, our next metric focuses on the locking mechanism of each of these adjustable paddles. The Tiare again delivered top-tier results, earning another one of the best scores.

This paddle has a LeverLock locking mechanism, which is a single lever in the center of the handle. Lift this up, and an internal mechanism releases, allowing you to adjust the length. Fold it down, and this internal mechanism locks the length in place, while the lever also conveniently lies flush with the handle.

This is by far our favorite type of locking mechanism, vastly outperforming the camlock or dual-pin paddles in our mind. We find it much sleeker and easier to use.

kialoa tiare fiberglass adjustable sup paddle review - while it might not be the most striking paddle out there, the kialoa...
While it might not be the most striking paddle out there, the Kialoa still scored quite well in our aesthetics metric.
Credit: David Wise

Aesthetics


For our last rating metric, we — quite literally — looked at the aesthetics of each stand up paddle board paddle. This Tiare finished out the tests with another strong showing, earning an above-average score.

This paddle doesn’t have the most striking appearance, but we like the color combination and the smooth lines.

Value


This paddle is definitely one of the more expensive options out there, so it probably isn’t a great option for anyone shopping on a tight budget.

Conclusion


If you are looking for a top-tier product designed with the lady paddler in mind, then we highly recommend the Kialoa Tiare. It has great paddling performance and is very convenient and easy to use, with the smaller handle and paddle blade perfect for smaller paddlers.

Marissa Fox
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